One fifth of payment cards are used for payments every day, and as many as 40 percent of them at least once a week – are the results of the latest MasterIndex BiH survey.
The reason for the frequent use of payment cards lies primarily in the simplicity and convenience that this payment method brings, which was pointed out by 26 percent of respondents, while another 22 percent appreciate the constant access to funds in the account.
The annual study on the habits and needs of active payment card users, which Mastercard in BiH has traditionally conducted since 2017, points out that debit cards are still the card product that the largest number of respondents (91%) own. They are most often used for purchases in supermarkets (66%), gas stations (45%), in clothing and footwear stores (43%), online shopping (23%), as well as for paying monthly bills at counters and online applications of utility companies. and telecoms (18%).
When it comes to locations where they would like to pay by card, but this is not currently possible, except for state institutions and utilities (27%), citizens pointed out markets (24%) and parking fees (20%), and for the first time since the research was conducted, medical institutions were in the first place (34%).
Every fourth respondent said that they have a credit card in their wallet, with which payments are most often made in furniture and appliances stores (49%), in clothing and footwear stores (45%), in supermarkets (44%) and for paying for fuel at gas stations. 36%).
“The upward trend of non-cash payments in BiH is well evidenced by the data from the MasterIndex research that not only are standard and contactless card payments the first choice for amounts over 60 KM, but that this is more than twice as common as cash, ie 69 according to 31 percent of respondents ’responses. The increasingly digital lifestyle of citizens opens the way for further implementation of non-cash solutions, while at the same time, the priority for the public and private sector should be to expand the reception network in the SME sector and non-traditional traders, because in BiH there is still a large reception gap. average”, said Jelena Ristić, director of Mastercard for the markets of Serbia, BiH and Montenegro.
Ristić added that for the first time on the BiH market, a Pay & Get campaign was implemented in May, the goal of which was to support purchases from domestic e-merchants and additionally encourage further growth of online transactions. Although the campaign has yielded successful results, achieving double-digit growth in ecommerce transactions in just one month, it should be emphasized that the BiH market still does not have enough, not only online reception, but also through POS devices, which confirms the need for joint efforts of public and private sectors to create better opportunities in terms of acceptance, which in turn benefits the state and the market as a whole.
Examining what motivates citizens to pay with cards, MasterIndex showed that these are primarily discounts (59%) and the ability to actually pay with a card at any location (44%), and the list also included a refund (37 %) and the possibility of withdrawing cash when paying by card (36%). This last option, which Mastercard introduced to the neighboring Serbian market in 2019, is still not available in BiH, and as the study shows, there is interest among citizens and they would most like to use this service in supermarkets (37%), at gas stations (23%), and local grocery stores (14%).
BiH citizens most often choose domestic web stores
MasterIndex shows that 71% of respondents have encountered online payments and shopping. Mostly online payments are made on a monthly basis (34%), while 9% of respondents practice paying online at least once a week.
39% of citizens buy home supplies online, and 26% pay their bills online, which is a significant factor at the market level for educating end users and including new citizens in e-commerce. In addition to paying bills, respondents buy clothes (35%), sports equipment (20%) and groceries (16%) online.
Domestic web stores are more frequent shopping addresses than foreign online stores (38% vs. 17% of respondents), and 22% of respondents have no preference. Not insignificant is the share that social networks, such as Instagram and Facebook, have in the online store, as new sales channels used by 15% of MasterIndex survey respondents.